Confessio Amantis, Or, Tales of the Seven Deadly Sins
Excerpt: ...maister scholde mete, Which, as thei seiden, was unmete 2140 Above hem alle, and couthe most; And he withoute noise or bost Al priveli, so as he wolde, Upon the morwe his swevene tolde To themperour riht in his Ere, And seide him that he wiste where A tresor was so plentivous Of gold and ek so precious Of jeueals and of riche stones, That unto alle hise hors at ones 2150 It were a charge sufficant. This lord upon this covenant Was glad, and axeth where it was. The maister seide, under the glas, And tolde him eke, as for the Myn He wolde ordeigne such engin, That thei the werk schull undersette With Tymber, that withoute lette Men mai the tresor saufli delve, So that the Mirour be himselve 2160 Withoute empeirement schal stonde: And this the maister upon honde Hath undertake in alle weie. This lord, which hadde his wit aweie And was with Covoitise blent, Anon therto yaf his assent; And thus they myne forth withal, The timber set up overal, Wherof the Piler stod upriht; Til it befell upon a nyht 2170 These clerkes, whan thei were war Hou that the timber only bar The Piler, wher the Mirour stod, - Here sleihte noman understod, - Thei go be nyhte unto the Myne With pich, with soulphre and with rosine, And whan the Cite was a slepe, A wylde fyr into the depe They caste among the timberwerk, And so forth, whil the nyht was derk, 2180 Desguised in a povere arai Thei passeden the toun er dai. And whan thei come upon an hell, Thei sihen how the Mirour fell, Wherof thei maden joie ynowh, And ech of hem with other lowh, And seiden, "Lo, what coveitise Mai do with hem that be noght wise!" And that was proved afterward, For every lond, to Romeward 2190 Which hadde be soubgit tofore, Whan this Mirour was so forlore And thei the wonder herde seie, Anon begunne desobeie With werres upon every side; And thus hath Rome lost his pride And was defouled overal. For this I finde of Hanybal, That he of Romeins in a dai, Whan he hem fond out of arai, 2200 So gret a...
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- 13 Sep 2013
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